Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Lost: "Recon" Recap

Recon. Re-Con.

This episode was also known as "Saywer finally pulls a hat-trick." Of course I am referring to the fact that Mr. Ford finally completes the spectrum of lays and has relations with one lady of every hair color; the big (random) flavor of the week was the late Charlotte Lewis (also of the C.S. Lewis tree of references), who in turn, offered nothing of value except passionate lovemaking and a tiny bit of info that she still fell into the archaeology gig. Sawyers' alternate digs, however, place him in different professional circumstances: he is a con-man for the law rather than a fugitive. Why is this important? Because Sawyer, to Miles (his partner, and loyal flunky in both worlds), explains that he at one point had an important choice in life: become a criminal or cop. In the alternate realm, James Ford chose the nobler of the two professions, yet all that "good" he has done in the name of justice has not rid him of his lust to find the con-man that destroyed his family.

One can infer from the fact that James Ford still endured the traumatic death of his father and mother, that Sawyer's fork in the road happens after Jacob touches him - or doesn't - at his parents' funeral as a child; more simply, Sawyer's alternate reality resets to when he had a choice as a confused child, whether to con for good, or evil.

Thus, did the island, and Jacob, still have an affect on Sawyer's life? Or, did the absence of Jacob allow for Jim Ford to edge toward good, rather than evil?

There was nothing really revolutionary about this story, compared to others in Lost cannon. What it established was its place in line with the rest of season 6's alternate lore of divergent and semi-redemptive stories. I say "semi" because it was probably not an accident that this story ends with Sawyer running into to alternate-fugitive Kate, because so far both of their off-island stories have been the most open-ended and unresolved: Kate was still on the run, and Sawyer was still in search of his family's con-man murderer (conmurderer?). Sawyer re-con's in his alternate life, and he maybe be re-conning everyone on the island.

Big question: because of Locke's implied relationship with his "too-be-invited to the wedding" father, is there a new Sawyer in James' past, or will it still turn out to be Locke's father?

"Recon" Off-island

* Sawyer lays on the old "whoopsy-suitcase" con the same way in both realities, but to different effects and desired outcomes; the point is that he is both in control of the the con in one reality and the arrest in the other, but more specifically it is to set up and underscore Darth Locke's faith in Sawyer and his ability to lie and detect lies.

* Charlotte = hot. It's amazing what happens for the complection when blood isn't spewing out of every orifice because of a time-warp. She finds a file (was she aleady looking for it?) in Mr. Ford's baggage labeled, "Saywer." The two ways to read this scene is either Charlotte was looking for this information, or whether this was part of a typical Sawyer con. Going back to the instigator of the date, multiple interpretations can be inferred from Miles offering up a "date tonight," including the veiled reference to whether or not James wanted to "die alone," (instead of live together). Are we to believe that Miles' friend Charlotte, who "works with his father at the museum", is not a police target and a potential Sawyer-con, or was the whole eventual odd sexing and morning-after meltdown a sincere (and awkward) one-night stand?

* After Sawyer's failed attempt at reconciliation (or follow-up BJ) with Charlotte, thanks to his tipsy revelation watching "Little House on the Prairie," he reveals the "truth" to Miles about his spelunking down in Australia; we didn't learn if he had murdered this time around, but Sawyer's soul-bearing lead to a run in with an awful stereotype: chick-driving. Yes, Kate did nothing but perpetuate the stigma that females have one weakness. I wonder if Sawyer's holding cells are called the "polar bear cages."

"Recon" On-island

* Hey - that's where Sawyer was last week when mass slaughter was going on at the temple - he was tending to Jin! Poor Jin, he is always either half blown up, or a prisoner. Smokey reveals to Sawyer, probably not to his great shock, that he is the smoke monster. For some reason, I didn't quite believe the MIB this time around; I mean I know everything points to him at least having control of the pillar of black death, but its starting to seem, especially out of Darth Locke's mouth, too obvious that new-Locke and the smoke are one and the same.

* A week ago, I was convinced, but the full-on disclosure by the MIB to Sawyer has me questioning whether or not the circumstantial nature of Smokey's recent assaults are due to the fact that the MIB is controlling the monster, rather than actually being the monster. This could also explain how Ben was able to call upon it at one point, but the jury is out rather than unanimous in my mind. OK, I know we had the first-person POV in Locke's episode "The Substitute," but there still could be a cool swerve waiting in the wings.

* Why does Darth Locke send Sawyer away? He claims its because Sawyer is the "best liar he knows," but obviously he anticipates an encounter with Widmore. The question that the audience needs to be asking is for what, or whom, is Widmore working for? Widmore, I believe, was too accepting of Sawyer's offer (and maybe-con) of bringing fake-Locke to be judgement at the hands of Widmore. Widmore easy-acceptance begs the question why he and he small horde didn't join Jack's posse, which leads me to believe that his presence on the island is either for Locke (and anti-Jacob) or for his own unknown purposes. Widmore had left the island several times at will to have and establish a family before his exile at the hands of Ben, so why would he come back? Either he had indeed fallen from Jacob's grace, or had been a victim of Smokey's influence over Ben and and Ben's consolidation of power over the Others; thus, if the latter is true, Widmore should be seeking revenge and a re-establishment of his power on the island.

* "Sayid, are you alright?" Kate was then interrupted by a crazed knife-wielding Claire going for the jugular. Sayid watched quite passively (and maybe hopelessly, or pilled out), as Claire's knife edged nearer to Kate's throat. Ultimately, Smokey comes to the "rescue," hurling Claire off with ease and then, quite literally, slapping some sense into her as only Chuck Norris could appreciate. Once again, this episode will play well for those of you Smoke-fans who enjoy his brand of full-discloser; Darth Locke tells Claire that she had disappeared, so Kate HAD to take Aaron. Ultimately, this scene leads to both an apology by Smokey to Kate for lying to Claire. His awkward and ironic reasoning: Claire had to be fed hate to survive in the absence of her baby. Star Wars link: hate and suffering = the dark side. Come on people, how cut and dry could the force be?

* This also leads to Creeper-Claire apologizing to Kate, but in an episode devoted to a con-man, this played more like an elaborate mind-game with Kate to win her over after Smokey was noticeably surprised by her presence in his camp. Call this a "Plan B" for the monster if you will, but this was the first time that Smokey has admitted to lying outright, which should set off alarm bells for all you Darth Locke lovers out there. In the end, these were brief, but great scenes that highlighted where our Smokey recruits are. Someone get Sayid a 5 hour energy shot - maybe he won't be so stabby.

* Sawyer reveals his gambit to Kate: he is trying to play Smokey and Widmore against each other to give them enough time to commandeer the submarine. Who the hell would pilot that submarine anyway? It made me wonder whether or not the all powerful one - the one most in need of a physical and cosmic man-chest support (he has chick-tits), Darth Locke, was also yanking Sawyer's chain about wanting to fly the plane off the island. If Smokey loved pilots so much, why kill the only one left alive in the first episode? Why let the new pilot, Lupidus, meander over to Jedi-Jack's camp? Hell, why couldn't he just Smoke his way off? It could have been the Sawyer episode, but I don't trust a damn thing or motivation the came from either Darth Locke or Widmore; ironically, the only one I did trust in the end was Sawyer - which I guess was the point. We all hoped and guessed that Sawyer was just on "recon," but maybe this long-con still isn't as cut and dry as we think it is. Perhaps we are still at the mercy of Sawyer and his devilish southern drawl.

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